Narcissists and Memory

My EXNH had an unbelievable memory. He could remember details and dates like no one I had seen before. However, there was only one reason why he remembered these dates and that was to garner Narcissistic Supply.

It's a great question, Aceone Lady. Whether their memory is different than ours. The answer is yes. Studies tell us we have two different memories for the same situation. One is explicit memory - a memory of the details of the experience and the other is Implicit memory - a memory of the emotions connected to the experience. For example, smelling a baked apple pie reminds me of my Grandma and brings about an emotional response of missing her. That is implicit memory. Explicit memory would be my ability to remember how to make the pie. - the details of the experience.

Narcissists are very good at Explicit memory - the details, the how to, when, where, what, etc. However, they have horrible Implicit memory, which is always triggered by an emotion, or sense of smell, touch, taste, etc. They are incapable of bringing forth emotional memories, only factual memories. They are incapable of emotion. Therefore, when you ask if they have memories about us, the answer is yes and no.

Yes, they remember the details (Explicit Memory). However, the emotions (Implicit Memory) are totally lost on them. They didn't experience emotions when it happened and certainly will not experience emotions when remembering it.

It's hard to accept, but it's simply the way they are built. Their ability to delete their memories about us, as you put it, is the only way they know how to survive. It's no way to live. Trust me, we are fortunate that we can feel. xoxo

Aug 3 - 1AM
Kelly's picture


When my last n D&D'd me, he didn't remember anything about the way he felt - he didn't really feel! I'm sure he realized that he should feel something . . . From time to time, while we were together and happy, he would attempt to describe his feelings, but never could. I would try to guess . . it was almost like a weird game. I would always give it up and let it go.
Jul 31 - 12PM
Scoop's picture

They couldnt feel any

They couldnt feel any emotion at the time so they are certainly not going to feel emotion with a memory ... this hit home to me . When we where getting his things from his mothers house there where some cards and letters form diffrent victums and granparents and he wanted the whole lot to be thrown away he only wanted a few toys from his childhood to me kept proberly because they where werth some money , i kept his letters and cards and sneeked them into his keep box for him , pointless i suppose but i couldnt bare for the love shown in the cards to be tossed away if that makes sence .